Teens and young adults have different skin to adult skin. So is acne different too?
The causes of acne, at all ages, are similar. Acne can be linked to genetics, overactive or deregulated hormones (sex hormones, stress hormones, insulin, etc), the choice of lifestyles (nutrition, skincare, habits, activities) and the environmental factors. It is known that 85% of adolescents get acne and about 40% of adult women get acne. A small % of adult men get acne and are usually linked to steroid use or high consumption of milk proteins.
But age makes some differences too. The composition of the hormones, in particular the sex hormones, changes from puberty to various stages of adulthood. Skin's age also changes. Young people’s skin are in a ‘growth mode’ (faster collagen synthesis and faster renewal of the skin cells) compared to adult skin that enters ‘ageing mode’ from around 25 (ageing in the sense of the growth phase being over).
Adolescence Acne Vs. Adult Acne
Acne at adolescence is linked to the growth of sexual hormones. The body grows and the sexual organs develop as a response to the push in hormones and growth factors. This hormonal growth phase can start as early as 11 years old and can last past 18 years of age. The growth of these hormones creates an imbalance, which is likely to continue until the end of the growth phase. This imbalance is the main cause of acne at this age group.
Adult acne is usually linked to the deregulation of various hormones (as opposed to the growth of sexual hormones).
In this respect, targeting acne for adolescents and young adults is slightly different from solutions for adults. For adults, we can talk about rebalancing hormones naturally by combining nutrition, stress management and non-damaging skincare. For young people, we need a dual approach of targeting acne and supporting a healthy hormonal growth. This is why we can't agree with the prescription of hormone manipulation drugs like birth control pills and isotretinoin (roaccutane) to target acne, especially at these critical ages of development.
Regardless of the phase or age of the acne sufferer, Skin Diligent believes that targeting acne is not about a harsh treatment for the skin or the health. On the contrary, we would recommend replenishing with antioxidants, supporting the hormones for a healthy growth or balance, and diversifying the gut and skin microbiomes are key.
How to choose skincare for a young person?
Choose skincare that doesn't contain sensitising ingredients, allergens. If it is irritating or formulated with high percentage of certain active ingredients, the products can sensitise the skin. For young people, less is best. A gentle cleanser that respects the microbiome like our Triple Action Cleanser would be the product we would recommend for all. A well balanced hydrating cream might be another for those with dry skin.
In the case of acne, harsh and irritating products add more fuel to an already inflamed and fragile skin condition. So opt for spot treatments and acne-targeting creams that are effective but gentle like our Multilayer Serum and Regulating Cream.
Adults can also use Skin Diligent Acne-Prone Skin products
Yes, adults can also use Skin Diligent skincare products, and they are safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women. Our skincare products have been tested for oestrogenic endocrine disruption, are hypoallergenic, non-sensitising, non-irritating.
The Acne & Stress food supplement has been formulated to support the hormonal growth of teens and young adults as well as to replenish with antioxidants and important minerals.